Urgent***Broken Leg, no feeling in toes. Cull or amputate?

Discussion in 'Emergencies / Diseases / Injuries and Cures' started by FeaganFarm, Oct 23, 2010.

  1. FeaganFarm

    FeaganFarm Out Of The Brooder

    Oct 23, 2010
    Oh boy, My favorite roo, of course, has a broken leg. I think something bit it. It is broken through, not through the skin, but a clean break. Midway between the foot and ankle. Normally I would just set and splint such a break, however there has been some nerve damage. He has no feeling in his toes. There seems to be circulation, but no feeling. What do I do???? I will cull, but I want to give him as much of a chance as possible. Should I splint and see if the foot heals???? He does have an open wound near the break but the bone is not sticking out. I have antibiotics to treat. Or is amputation an option? Do one legged chickens have a life? Help!
  2. equine623

    equine623 Chillin' With My Peeps

    Mar 17, 2009
    NE PA
    I had a hen get a leg caught in a door that slammed shut during a winter storm (popped up when I wasn't home to get everything battened down) and the leg was broken, totally open wound down to the bone. We tried splinting and wrapping, hydrotherapy and antibiotic ointment a couple times a day. Foot eventually fell off, wound slowly healed down to cover the bone stump although I did cut the bone to make it smooth and not pointy. She loved living inside being pampered, she even continued to lay eggs. She lives back outside with the flock, free ranges daily and hops around on her 1 and a half legs.

    My only caveat is that she is a Polish, so she's a lighter weight breed that has an easier time getting around using her wings to help propel when she feels the need to race around. Might have not been as successful with my Barred Rocks since they are bigger.

    Doesn't hurt to splint, since its not open you have less of a risk for infection. If the foot dies, it will fall off or become a noticeable hindrance and you can make a decision then.

    If he isn't suffering, its worth a shot. Animals are hardy, they don't get bogged down with self pity and feeling "different" [​IMG]

    Good luck!
  3. Olive Hill

    Olive Hill Overrun With Chickens

    Apr 19, 2009
    Amputating the leg entirely isn't a good idea. One legged chickens don't get around well, chickens with a stub however do stand a chance if there isn't a lot of competition to deal with. If you have the time, resources and desire to milk him through the injury in isolation, by all means, give it a shot. You can always cull later if it doesn't seem to be working. But also don't feel bad for culling now if you're not up to the task of a long and, at times, work -intensive recovery.
  4. FeaganFarm

    FeaganFarm Out Of The Brooder

    Oct 23, 2010
    He is a white rock. If I did have to amputate he would still have a nice stump. I am going to splint it, give antibiotics and see how it goes. Thank You.
  5. Three Cedars Silkies

    Three Cedars Silkies Overrun With Chickens

    Apr 17, 2008
    Gainesville, Fl.
    Splint it well and put him in a small crate for a week to 10 days to limit his activity. Usually they will heal pretty well.
  6. FeaganFarm

    FeaganFarm Out Of The Brooder

    Oct 23, 2010
    He is pretty tame so I don't think he will object to being confined. He is in good spirits, eating well and drinking.
  7. FeaganFarm

    FeaganFarm Out Of The Brooder

    Oct 23, 2010
    HE MOVED HIS TOES!!!! I think the foot may just make it! He seems to be healing pretty well so far. Wish I had taken a pic of his leg before I splinted it.
  8. Judy

    Judy Chicken Obsessed Staff Member Premium Member

    Feb 5, 2009
    South Georgia

    I just now found this thread, but would have recommended what you did.

    Remember, 4-6 weeks for a fracture.

    I'll be he'll lead a long and happy roo life. A limpy one, perhaps, but so be it....
  9. CrazyCatNChickenLady

    CrazyCatNChickenLady Chillin' With My Peeps

    Jan 23, 2010
    Berry Creek, Ca
    I had one of my boys break his leg in a dog attack.. Clean break right at the hock. I had no hope, Splinting was a failure, but he was thriving(the reason I didn't cull! He was still very interested in food and life!). He lived in a rubbermaid container in my dining room for a WHILE!!! It eventually healed (really crooked!) but after some 'physical therapy' he managed to get around pretty well! UNFORTUNATELY it made him very slow, and SPOILED(slept in the laundry room attached to the house, and didn't do confinement very well!)- something eventually got him in the end [​IMG] but I dont regret the extra 5 months he got to live, only the horrible end he must have faced. If theirs alot of competition or preditors maybe I'd re-evaluate the situation?

    I'm happy he moved his toes, although I'm not sure even a human would move their toes right after they broke their leg(?) But I've never broken a bone so I really dont know!! [​IMG] ETA: re-read OP.. What made you think he couldn't feel it? pinch or squeeze? its possible their could have been nerve or tendon damage on top of shock? or he felt it but the pain of the broken leg made him not think about it!(?) (okay now I just feel like I'm babbling and thinking out loud! I'll shut up now! [​IMG] )

    GOOD LUCK!!! [​IMG]
    Last edited: Oct 25, 2010
  10. Rocky Top Chick

    Rocky Top Chick Chillin' With My Peeps

    Feb 2, 2009
    North Carolina
    Just last year my Bunny broke her leg in the exact place your roo did. We splinted and she healed. The foot has good circulation, but no feeling or grip. Did this stop Bunny, no way. She hops just as fast as the others and her foot acts as a prosthetic foot. It is larger than the other foot, but other than that she is great.

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